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07 Mar

Get vaccinated against hassle-frustration Get vaccinated against hassle-frustration

Datum: 2012-03-07 11:00

On a Mon­day in the begin­ning of March I had the inten­tion to fly to a client and hold a one-day course in per­son­al efficiency.

And oh, did I try!

But, as the break­ing-con­di­tions on the run-way were too poor, there was a snow-storm, the pilot had to be replaced last minute and final­ly there was a tech­ni­cal mal­func­tion, what was ini­tial­ly a two-hour flight turned into eight hours of trav­el­ing and I only made it half-way before I had to turn around and go back home with my mis­sion unaccomplished.

When things like these hap­pen, it is easy to regard it as a lost day (which one of my fel­low pas­sen­gers did and got the mood cor­re­spond­ing to this atti­tude), but there are sev­er­al things you can do to still make it into a pro­duc­tive day.

Think before you go

Cre­ate the right con­di­tions for get­ting things done, no mat­ter what hap­pens, for instance by bring­ing more work­ma­te­r­i­al than what you think you will need for your trip, incase some­thing unpre­dict­ed should occur.

Think about what you could bring which does not require pow­er, silence, pri­va­cy or an inter­net con­nec­tion, so that you are not at a loss if your flight should be delayed.

Do this

There are many things you can do to relieve your­self of pos­si­ble stress, frus­tra­tion and anger. Here are some suggestions.

  • Write – When your com­put­er has been unplugged from an out­let for long enough and your bat­tery has died, you can still for­mu­late the e‑mails you know you have to write soon any­ways. When I write e‑mails, the actu­al phras­ing and choice of words takes just as long as the typ­ing and send­ing. So if you can spend your time in trav­el­ing-lim­bo” by out­lin­ing impor­tant e‑mails by hand, half the work is done once your com­put­er is up and run­ning again and you can send them.
  • Draw – Grab a pen and a pad, and draw a sto­ry­board” depict­ing the pre­sen­ta­tion you are giv­ing at the next depart­ment-meet­ing. Think through and choose which images you want to show and make sketch­es of them, almost like a com­ic-strip. Doing this will sig­nif­i­cant­ly speed up the process of mak­ing and assem­bling the images on the com­put­er lat­er when you are prepar­ing the actu­al presentation.
  • Call – Make sure to syn­chro­nize your con­tacts from your com­put­er onto your phone before leav­ing the office, so that you will not have to look for a phone-num­ber when you have time to make some phone-calls. Or a name for that mat­ter, per­haps that of the per­son who is the new pur­chase man­ag­er of the com­pa­ny you have tried to get as a client for a long time.
  • Work on your com­put­er – If you keep dig­i­tal doc­u­ments in more places than on your portable com­put­er, make sure to syn­chro­nize your lap­top before you go so that you have all the files you need (and more, includ­ing those you did not think you would need). Make sure you have the option to access the file serv­er for your net­work when you are work­ing remote­ly. Speak to your IT-depart­ment. Anoth­er option is to store your doc­u­ments in the renowned cloud”, using ser­vices such as Google Doc­u­ments, Drop­box, Box​.com, ZoHo et c (Cloud​wards​.net has an infor­ma­tive overview here), so that you can reach them when you are on the road.
  • Read — In case some­thing would change in your itin­er­ary, bring arti­cles, con­tracts, things you need to proof-read, or oth­er doc­u­ments which you nev­er seem to get to when at work. When all the bat­ter­ies in your tech­ni­cal gad­gets have dis­charged and an inter­net con­nec­tion is far from avail­able, you will thank your­self for bring­ing some­thing to read.

Low­er lev­els of adrenaline

If you pre­pare for pos­si­bly being delayed, slowed down, rerout­ed, can­celled, redi­rect­ed or put on hold while trav­el­ing, and by cre­at­ing the pre­con­di­tions for being able to work with some­thing pro­duc­tive no mat­ter the cir­cum­stances, you will find it eas­i­er to accept any unex­pect­ed events with a greater peace of mind.

As your fel­low pas­sen­gers get increas­ing­ly loud, annoyed and the adren­a­line starts to flow, you will be able to calm­ly immense your­self in the mate­r­i­al you brought to work on and relax since you know this is the right thing to do right now.

What is your way of han­dling unex­pect­ed delays?

How do you vac­ci­nate your­self against has­sle-frus­tra­tion? Leave a com­ment to let us know.